Hip Replacement

by Rachel Bhan


Hip replacement surgery is a medical procedure that is designed to replace part or the whole hip joint. The acetabulum is the part of the hip socket that is the first to be replaced. This is the bone that is in the shape of a cup and is found in the pelvis. The next part of the hip that may need to be replaced is the head of the femur or the ball. This is also known as the thighbone.

A hip replacement consists of a prosthesis that is made out of artificial parts. The artificial parts form a socket of a plastic that is of a high density. The artificial ball is made out of a strong stainless steel and is connected to a stem. Hip replacement surgery is designed to relieve pain that a person may experience due to injury or deterioration of the hip. Hip replacement surgery is also designed to improve the function and mobility of the hip joint. An individual may need a total hip replacement or just a partial hip replacement.

If an individual has a total hip replacement there is a long recovery time. Sometimes an individual who has a total hip replacement will have to go to a rehabilitation center in order to have physical and occupational therapy. Usually this decision depends on the age of the individual having the surgery performed. After a total hip replacement an individual will have to take time off from work and will feel a severe amount of pain that can be controlled with medication. After the pain subsides many people find that a total hip replacement allows them to feel like a brand new person. As some patients say they will be “dancing in no time.”

A candidate for hip replacement surgery is usually an individual who suffers from severe arthritis. Severe arthritis is known for wearing down the bone structure of the hip joint. Someone who has had an injury, avascular necrosis, bone tumor or a loss of bone due to low blood supply may also need to have a hip replacement.

The following conditions usually apply to someone who is having hip replacement surgery: the pain is so severe that normal activities are restricted, arthritis medications do not relieve the pain, the person is not helped through the use of a walker or cane, the person has a stiffness in the hip that restricts their usual activities or an x-ray shows that an individual has severe arthritis.


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